If you’re looking to get into music production- but don’t want to spend on it- read on! It’s not far-fetched and is entirely possible to work from your computer without buying expensive software. Talking to the experts in music and software, we got their recommendations for the 8 best applications that are absolutely free to download and now you can get started producing music!
One of the best free music production software suites that actually lets you use its entire functionality without paying extra is Audacity. This software has been around for a long time and it’s 100% free to use, including mastering and recording. The interface may not have all the bells and whistles when compared to Ableton and Reason, but it certainly gets the job done.
For a free program, I would say you can do a lot with it and compose a song from start to finish. However, it does have a bit of a steep learning curve compared to other similar software, which is understandable given that it’s completely free and open-source.
In short, I would recommend Audacity for no-frills music recording if you have the time and patience to master it!
Stefan Ateljevic, Founder of PlayToday
- Apple GarageBand
This is one of the best, as it is created for Mac and includes all of the necessary features and apps. For Mac users, it’s completely free to download. Instruments, guitar and vocal preset, session drummers and percussionists, realistic amps and effects, and a large sound library allow a lot of creative freedom.
Drum recordings with a human-like sound can be created. Drummer contains 28 drummers and two percussionists who create beats. The touch bar features on the MacBook Pro have enabled users to learn, produce, and share beautiful music with the rest of the world. It’s a fantastic way to make music and listen to it on a Mac. For the iPhone and iPad, there is also a garage band app.
Gerrid Smith, Chief Marketing Officer at Joy Organics
This application makes music-making and recording simple. CDs and the internet can be used to distribute the generated and recorded music. Many powerful desktop programs are included. It includes a variety of audio tools for various genres and styles. It includes filters, reverbs, delays, degraders, phasers, and other real-time effects; various daw tools like trim loop, cut, copy, paste, time-stretching, pitch-shifting, and more; 4 sample players like sam-1, gm-2, drum machine, SPC; and 5 virtual synthesizers like simple, mono, supersaw, the wub machine, and noise.
Adam Wood, Co-Founder of RevenueGeeks
The best free music production software download in 2021 is Cakewalk by BandLab. Cakewalk by BandLab is a free Windows-only DAW with premium features that hit the scene in 2018. It used to be a paid DAW known as SONAR, but after the brand was acquired by the Singaporean music company BandLab, it was re-released as a free product.
The Cakewalk DAW lives up to its name. It’s an intuitive and customizable music-making suite that can keep up with competitors like Ableton Live or Logic Pro. The user interface is virtually unchanged from the SONAR days, with track and master metering on the left, a large center arrangement view, and audio/sample browsing on the right. It also includes design cues and features found in its competitors, such as Matrix Mode, which lets you trigger and loop audio clips as you can in Ableton’s Session View or Logic’s Live Loops.
One of the best features is the built-in ProChannel Strip, a set of audio effects (EQ, compressor, saturation, tape emulation, console emulation, and more) meant to color and shape your sound before it hits any other processing. If you’re someone who’s coming from recording on 4-track tape machines, you’ll feel right at home with the Cakewalk interface and channel strip.
Olivia Tan, Co-founder CocoFax
It really comes down to the type of producer they want to be, what genres of music/sound design they want to specialize in, and more. Many of the aspiring DJs in our community realize the way to accelerate their careers is by diving into music production.
- Ableton Live Lite
To achieve this, I couldn’t recommend Ableton Live Lite enough! It is a free stripped-down version of the professional version. Ableton is probably the music industry-leading digital audio workstation (DAW) out there – especially for electronic music production. So using the Lite version is going to make the most sense as the transition from Lite to Pro is guaranteed to be seamless.
What makes this free music production software unique is it still includes many audio interfaces, MIDI controllers, plugins, and even iOS apps that offer a license for Live Lite without having to commit to the pro version.
- Live Lite
Live Lite gives you a total of 16 tracks with any combination of audio and midi channels. It allows up to four inputs as well as outputs at any one time. It utilizes a workflow that most producers love as well as a good range of effects and instruments that come already included. All of these combined make it a great (and free) starting point.
Chaz Nahas is the founder of DJTechSource.com and a professional DJ helping aspiring DJs and music producers to get started.
- PreSonus Studio One Prime Music Production Software
PreSonus Studio One Prime Music Production Software is the Best Free Music Production Software download in 2021 because beginners efficiently use it. The software was rated 4 out of 5 stars. It has a user-friendly interface that makes it easy to use for inexperienced music producers.
The program has many features common to professional music production software, including MIDI editing, file management, audio recording, and the ability to export the music you create. The product provides easy-to-use backing tracks with nearly 2 million loops available. These recordings are both pre-packed and user-created. You can download loops directly.
Katherine Brown, the Founder & Marketing Director Spyic
- Acon Digital Verberate
Acon digital verberate is a reverb plug-in software meant for mixing and sound design. It has four distinct reverbs: Plate, room, hall, and lush. This is perfect for beginners as it is very easy to use. This algorithm will deliver unique reverb on your tracks and works by making realistic early reflections along with reverberation tail processors.
The controls are well laid out and make sense. It’s moderate on the CPU. It defaults to the idea that you are using it on a channel. I nearly always use it in a send and turn the Dry signal down to zero. Ease of use is the big thing here; it just sounds better quickly, it sounds more natural, but you get the easy control of an algorithm plugin. This is easy to learn, so use this algorithm with joy and happiness.
Tony Grenier, CEO Instrumental Global